Ecological sourcing of products and services
Erste Group Procurement (EGP) continued its efforts to include environmental criteria in its purchasing activities. Since 2014, the “Ethical and Environmental Code of Conduct for Suppliers of Goods and Services” of EGP has been applied across the group. Supplier evaluation criteria include besides economic criteria also sustainability and environmental aspects. In addition, EGP staff must pass the online test of the “Chartered Institute of Procurement and Supply (CIPS)” based in England.
Bank products with ecological benefits
Erste Group continuously develops products and services for its customers that incorporate sustainability criteria, including in-vestment products and financing. Especially Erste’s Asset Management company contributes to this targets and is market leader with sustainable investment funds.
Other environmental initiatives
Across the group, existing lighting systems have been replaced with LED systems wherever this made sense from an economical and technical point of view. At Erste Campus, water from large rainwater cisterns has been used for watering green spaces and flushing toilets since 2018.
In July 2019, the cooperation between the start-up Hut & Stiel and sOM started at Erste Campus. In the first five months of the collaboration, 8.7 t of coffee grounds from break rooms were collect-ed for usage in their regional mushroom production. This translates to an annual reduction of residual waste of more than 20 t.
In sponsoring, strategies were developed for avoiding plastics in promotional materials and environmentally friendly alternatives were adopted in 2019.
Another element of Erste Group’s environmental strategy is co-operation with environmental NGOs. They offer access to their local and international know-how and provide valuable assistance to Erste Group in its efforts to become an even more environmentally sustainable company. A good example in this regard is the close co-operation between Erste Asset Management and WWF on ecologically highly sustainable investment funds. By gaining 30% in value, the ERSTE WWF Stock Environment Fund underlined that sustainability and financial performance can be combined.